Invention Stories | Dawn Sole & Jacque Tanner Tarlton - BeautyBit™
Dawn Sole and Jacque Tanner Tarlton are the inventors of BeautyBit™, a three-in-one slanted tip, stainless steel tweezer, nail file & buffer. They were awarded INPEX “Woman Inventor of the Year 2012″. Innovate3D was happy to provide invention services to turn the idea of BeautyBit™ into a product many women will not want to be without. The patent for BeautyBit™ was approved at the beginning of 2013.
The Basics of the Invention
The BeautyBit™ concept was conceived as a liberating, simple and attractive beauty tool. It is a three-in-one solution consisting of slanted tip stainless steel tweezers with a removable (and therefore replaceable) nail file and separate buffer – and they can be customized. In terms of target demographics, the inventors find it hard to imagine that a woman would not want a BeautyBit™ in their make-up bag.
The Inspiration Behind the Invention
Like most good ideas, BeautyBit™ was the result of a troublesome predicament experienced by Dawn Sole just days earlier. As Dawn climbed into her Jeep she broke a nail. A small problem, to be sure, but one that is multiplied by millions of women.
Dawn searched her purse for her nail file, eventually found it and fixed the fingernail. She then went back into her purse for the buffer she needed to finish the job. It also occurred to her right there and then that while she was at it, she could sort her eyebrows out. As she delved back into her purse for the third time, searching around for another small beauty tool, it occurred to her that her time and effort would have been greatly reduced if only the three items were combined into one tool.
A great idea! Simple, logical, feasible – and, most important of all, useful.
The Invention Process, Concept to Finish
What do you do when you have a great idea for a new product but have no idea where to begin? What if you also work full time? This is how Dawn Sole and business partner Jacque Tanner Tarlton found themselves. They had brainstormed some ideas during a much-needed downtime on a beach one weekend towards the end of 2010.
After coming up with the concept of BeautyBit, Dawn and Jacque knew they were on to something, and they were determined to take the idea forward. The problem was they had no idea of how or where to begin.
We probably wasted about a year or so trying to find our way – just because we didn’t know any better. We did do some things right as we set up an incorporated company at the beginning of 2011, even as we worked full time in our sales management careers, and we applied for the right patents. Beyond that we did not know where to turn for help -the right kind of help.
In the early days of the invention process, Dawn and Jacque built some very basic prototypes on their own, by hand. They took pictures and tried to raise some interest in what they knew was a great idea that could be an amazing product. However, with their limited knowledge of design and product development, it was very difficult to get anyone else on board with the concept. They say that at the time they had no idea that they were going about it in completely the wrong way.
After months of little progress and a few false starts, Dawn and Jacque, refusing to give up, conducted some more online research in an effort to find help. This research led them to Innovate3D – an organization that works with individuals by providing technical expertise and tools to convert invention ideas into reality. The ethos that Innovate3D promotes and the reason Dawn and Jacque were drawn to the company is that Innovate3D states openly that inventors do not give up their intellectual property and retain all rights to the idea. Furthermore, they liked that the organization operates without a desire for profit, employing engineers and machinists that are struggling to find jobs in hard-hit areas of the US.
Dawn and Jacque made a couple of conference calls from their hometown of Miami to Kenan Wollborg, Invention Engineer at Innovate3D, at the end of 2011. Their instincts told them they were finally working with someone that could help them bring BeautyBit™ to life. They sent all their pictures and basic prototypes to Kenan to give him a visual idea of what they were doing, and this, in combination with the conference calls, provided him with a solid foundation.
Both women were lavish in their praise of Kenan, his design skills, and the way he coached them through the process, involving them every step of the way.
Kenan was wonderful, his creative skills were invaluable for us but more than that he listened to us and applied his knowledge to our idea, always taking account of our requirements and vision for BeautyBit™.
The starting point was to create a 3D CAD model of BeautyBit™. This was done in SolidWorks. Because the two parties were a thousand miles apart, conference calls were regularly set up, which allowed Dawn and Jacque to view the 3D CAD model in real time, add input, and see the changes as they were made to the digital model.
The next step, after finalizing the 3D digital model, was to create a professional prototype. Again, Innovate3D was able to accommodate this service, even working with the tight deadlines that Dawn and Jacque applied, having booked a booth at the INPEX, America’s largest invention tradeshow. INPEX, held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, works as a forum for inventors to exhibit their inventions and to network with companies interested in licensing, marketing or manufacturing new products. Prototypes of their invention would be critical to BeautyBit's success.
The Future of the Invention
A highlight of the INPEX traceshow is the awards ceremony, which puts a spotlight on the brightest and best new inventions seen at the show. Dawn and Jacque were shocked and ecstatic to receive the “Woman Inventor of the Year 2012″ award for BeautyBit™. Having been up against 300 other products in this category, their idea, their hard work and their perseverance were fully validated on a national stage.
We were staggered when we heard our names called. It was a very emotional time for us, but it was also very motivational. We knew that BeautyBit™ was a winner, but for INPEX to recognize that, too, is overwhelming. We also know that winning this award was in no small way due to Kenan and Innovate3D’s help with the development process.
Since winning the award, BeautyBit™ has, not surprisingly, received a great deal of attention. Dawn and Jacque are currently negotiating with a US-based manufacturer and distributor of some leading brands. They would like BeautyBit™ to be "made in the USA" but with global distribution. The design patent for BeautyBit™ was approved at the beginning of 2013, and, thanks to the sincerity and drive of these two women, BeautyBit™ should soon be available in stores.